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Quantum technologies

Dieter Meschede's research group
Home Optical microfibres Publications
Publications - Optical microfibres


  • U. Wiedemann, W. Alt and D. Meschede
    Switching photochromic molecules adsorbed on optical microfibres, Opt. Express 20, 12710-12720 (2012)BibTeXPDF
    The internal state of organic photochromic spiropyran molecules adsorbed on optical microfibres is optically controlled and measured by state-dependent light absorption. Repeated switching between the states is achieved by exposure to the evanescent field of a few nanowatts of light guided in the microfibre. By adjusting the microfibre evanescent field strength the dynamic equilibrium state of the molecules is controlled. Time-resolved photoswitching dynamics are measured and modelled with a rate equation model. We also study how many times the photochromic system can be switched before undergoing significant photochemical degradation.


  • R. Garcia-Fernandez, W. Alt, F. Bruse, C. Dan, K. Karapetyan, O. Rehband, A. Stiebeiner, U. Wiedemann, D. Meschede and A. Rauschenbeutel
    Optical nanofibers and spectroscopy, Applied Physics B 105, 3–15 (2011)arXivBibTeXPDF
    We review our recent progress in the production and characterization of tapered optical fibers with a sub-wavelength diameter waist. Such fibers exhibit a pronounced evanescent field and are therefore a useful tool for highly sensitive evanescent wave spectroscopy of adsorbates on the fiber waist or of the medium surrounding. We use a carefully designed flame pulling process that allows us to realize preset fiber diameter profiles. In order to determine the waist diameter and to verify the fiber profile, we employ scanning electron microscope measurements and a novel accurate in situ optical method based on harmonic generation. We use our fibers for linear and non-linear absorption and fluorescence spectroscopy of surface-adsorbed organic molecules and investigate their agglomeration dynamics. Furthermore, we apply our spectroscopic method to quantum dots on the surface of the fiber waist and to caesium vapor surrounding the fiber. Finally, towards dispersive measurements, we present our first results on building and testing a single-fiber bi-modal interferometer.


  • U. Wiedemann, K. Karapetyan, C. Dan, D. Pritzkau, W. Alt, S. Irsen and D. Meschede
    Measurement of submicrometre diameters of tapered optical fibres using harmonic generation, Opt. Express 18, 7693–7704 (2010)BibTeXPDF
    Applications of subwavelength-diameter optical fibres in nonlinear optics require precise knowledge of the submicrometre fibre waist diameter. We demonstrate a new technique for optical measurement of the diameter based on second- and third-harmonic generation with an accuracy of better than 2%. To generate the harmonic light, inter-modal phase matching must be achieved. We find that the phase-matching condition allows us to unambiguously deduce the fibre diameter from the wavelength of the harmonic light. High-resolution scanning electron microscope imaging is used to verify the results.


  • G. Sagué, E. Vetsch, W. Alt, D. Meschede and A. Rauschenbeutel
    Cold-Atom Physics Using Ultrathin Optical Fibers: Light-Induced Dipole Forces and Surface Interactions, Phys. Rev. Lett. 99, 163602 (2007)arXivBibTeXPDF
    The strong evanescent field around ultrathin unclad optical fibers bears a high potential for detecting, trapping, and manipulating cold atoms. Introducing such a fiber into a cold-atom cloud, we investigate the interaction of a small number of cold cesium atoms with the guided fiber mode and with the fiber surface. Using high resolution spectroscopy, we observe and analyze light-induced dipole forces, van der Waals interaction, and a significant enhancement of the spontaneous emission rate of the atoms. The latter can be assigned to the modification of the vacuum modes by the fiber.
  • F. Warken, E. Vetsch, D. Meschede, M. Sokolowski and A. Rauschenbeutel
    Ultra-sensitive surface absorption spectroscopy using sub-wavelength diameter optical fibers, Opt. Express 15, 11952-11958 (2007)arXivBibTeXPDF
    The guided modes of sub-wavelength diameter air-clad optical fibers exhibit a pronounced evanescent field. The absorption of particles on the fiber surface is therefore readily detected via the fiber transmission. We show that the resulting absorption for a given surface coverage can be orders of magnitude higher than for conventional surface spectroscopy. As a demonstration, we present measurements on sub-monolayers of 3,4,9,10-perylene-tetracarboxylic dianhydride (PTCDA) molecules at ambient conditions, revealing the agglomeration dynamics on a second to minutes timescale.


  • Y. Louyer, D. Meschede and A. Rauschenbeutel
    Tunable Whispering Gallery Mode Resonators for Cavity Quantum Electrodynamics, Phys. Rev. A 72, 031801(R) (2005)arXivBibTeXPDF
    We theoretically study the properties of highly prolate shaped dielectric microresonators. Such resonators sustain whispering gallery modes that exhibit two spatially well separated regions with enhanced field strength. The field per photon on the resonator surface is significantly higher than e.g. for equatorial whispering gallery modes in microsphere resonators with a comparable mode volume. At the same time, the frequency spacing of these modes is much more favorable, so that a tuning range of several free spectral ranges should be attainable. We discuss the possible application of such resonators for cavity quantum electrodynamics experiments with neutral atoms and reveal distinct advantages with respect to existing concepts.